Quiet Games for Toddlers: Pipe Cleaners

This past Spring I did some research on quiet books and ended up finding a lot of Montessori-inspired activities for my granddaughter. I put together about a dozen games. Some of them are more advanced than her development, but she’s growing into them.

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Now, there was one activity that I thought was really dumb, but it has ended up being a favorite. It’s very simple: give a child a colander and some pipe cleaners. Teach them to poke the pipe cleaners into the colander holes, and voila! Happy child!

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I honestly thought that sounded so boring, but it’s proven to be one of Lucy’s favorite games (at least, for now). She will play very happily for a lot longer than one might expect.

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I did create a variation of the game that is portable, used the lid from a spice container and the base from a container of decorating sprinkles, because I wanted a flip-up lid that couldn’t get lost.

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Speaking of lids, she decided on her own that she would close the lid after inserting a piece of pipe cleaner.


This activity was very affordable. I actually had all the supplies already, but I did buy some more pipe cleaners ($1).  When we first played this game, she was 18-months old. She wasn’t very good – I would put the pipe cleaner in for her, and she would push it. Now, she just goes for it. And, has started becoming imaginative with it, too.

It is beyond fun watching her grow. We know we are very blessed to have this time with our daughter and her family. Having them so close is a priceless gift. ❤



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